Imagine a McDonald’s store at the time of day when the “breakfast menu” orders shift to the “lunch menu.”
A tired, bored high school kid caught in the netherworld of “between shifts” trudges toward a bag of frozen french fries and dumps them into a rectangular, wire-mesh, stainless steel basket.
The kid drops the basket into a vat of boiling-hot cooking oil.
The slender slices of potato take only minutes to cook, and the “beep, beep, beep” of a timer alerts the kid to the next task.
The kid pulls the basket from the oil, shakes it and bangs it (always three times) on the fryer.
The kid dumps the fries into a stainless steel bin under harsh warming lights that cast a yellowish glow on the potatoes.
The kid pours more salt on the fries than the highway department uses to cover the roads during an ice storm.
And the process starts over.
But the kid doesn’t notice that stuck in the corner of that rectangular-shaped wire basket under all the soon-to-cook frozen fries remains stuck a “fry” from the previous batch.
And that “fry” goes back into the vat — over and over and over again — without notice.
Imagine what that “fry” looks like when the kid punches out at 6 p.m., after the “fry” remained stuck in the basket — like a soul in purgatory with no escape from the heat and monotony of getting dipped into boiling oil, hoping to escape but knowing it never will.
I am the “fry.”
I am burned to a crisp.
Imagine that.


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